See How Easily You Can Change the World

by Michelle Acker on May 16, 2012

in LOVE in action,Thought Provoking

Welcome to the new home of Thought Provoking Thursday!

 

I fall asleep to the sound of

a fan softly humming

in the safety of my temperature/humidity controlled house.

I wake to a softly chiming alarm from my phone,

and slip from the soft, clean sheets of my cozy bed.

Flip a switch and the early morning dark is filled with light.

I stumble into the shower,

where steamy hot water takes just a minute to appear.

Now, dressed, and slightly more awake,

I press a single button,

and wait what seems the longest minute ever

for the coffee machine to blink ready.

I insert a tiny, mess-free, plastic K-cup of coffee,

and wait for my mug to fill almost instantly.

I add deliciously flavored creamer,

and go start a load of laundry.

A minute of  so-called ‘work’,

and I have fresh clean clothes practically cleaning themselves.

I do the same with the dishwasher,

either unloading or loading,

depending on how lazy I was the night before.

Finally awake, I sit down with my steaming coffee

and open my favorite bible,

the one filled with photos of friends I met first

through the miracle of technology

 and memories of real life hugs,

and full of colored highlights and notes.

 

It’s 5:30 am.

I have just taken for granted more luxuries than many people will know in their entire lifetime.

I am guilty of this more days than I care to admit.  My children sometimes dream what it would be like “if we were rich” and I explain to them how wealthy we are compared to most of the world.  How blessed we are.  And still, I forget and take it all for granted all too often.

One of my favorite reminders is the Advent Conspiracy project my church does each Christmas.  I know it’s May, and far from Christmas right now, but if you’re not familiar with Advent Conspiracy, click here to take just a minute and watch their promo video. It’s eye-opening, I promise.

Lack of clean water kills more people today than ANYTHING.  By 5:30 am, I’ve already showered in, made coffee, done laundry, and washed dishes with clean water, all without even thinking about it.

Americans spend $450,000,000,000 each year on Christmas.  That’s $450 billion, and yet $20 billion is all that’s needed to solve the world’s clean water problem.  $38 a month is all it takes to sponsor a child through Compassion.  Do you see a problem with those numbers?

The phone I carry around in my pocket,

and misplace a thousand times a day…

it contains more resources and convenience

than some of the world will see in an entire lifetime.

  • What if you we bought just one less luxury today, tomorrow, this week… and donated the money to someone in need in your local area?
  • What if you we started planning for an Advent Conspiracy style Christmas now, so that we could give to projects that provide sustainable clean water wells to people who need it?
  • What if you we saved a little money, somewhere or other, and donated to sponsor a child like the one in this amazing post by The Nester?
  • What if you we donated the money to help have the bible translated into the language of someone who doesn’t have access to it in their own language?

What can you we do to shine light into the world?

 

Something to think about…

 



{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Christine May 17, 2012 at 5:49 AM

Yes, I think of this often as well, and am ashamed of how comfortable I am with my level of comfort. I read one of the Compassion posts to my children last week. Living in this country, we just don’t get it. Thank you for your post- helping us to remember to get it, on a daily basis.

Michelle May 17, 2012 at 5:57 AM

Thanks Christine. It’s hard to see just how fortunate and blessed we are sometimes, isn’t it? I’m planning to read that post by the Nester to the boys this weekend. What a great idea! 🙂

Christina May 17, 2012 at 6:43 AM

I take all if that for granted too. And even when our well isn’t working, I can always by bottled water. Great post! Thanks for the challenge!

Sharon May 17, 2012 at 7:04 AM

After going on a mission trip to Zambia, I was awakened to how rich I am even though by Western standards I am not. I became aware of how much I have and how much I depend on for comfort. Ever since, I see how God has used that experience to change my priorities.

Rebecca May 17, 2012 at 7:07 AM

It’s so easy to do that…to take it all for granted. Everytime I step into a HOT shower…I thank God for it and think of the mother who has never experienced that warmth…that clean feeling without fear of what could be lurking in the water.

Michelle May 18, 2012 at 6:26 AM

Oh… That might just change my thoughts with every hot shower from now on! Great idea.

Shelly Miller May 17, 2012 at 8:11 AM

Thanks for this reminder, this nudge toward gratefulness in what is taken for granted every day. I have been to Rwanda several times and every time it gives me perspective. And thanks for offering the link up on Thursdays, so nice to meet you.

Stefanie Brown (@stefanieybrown) May 17, 2012 at 8:13 AM

As I read the beginning of your post, it was as though I was reading an account of my morning (although I’m up at 6:30, not 5:30). I smiled, nodding my head in agreement. Then, as I read on, my nod shifted to a still head of concern. You are so right, my friend! Dan and I have been blessed to support the establishment of wells in Africa and found great satisfaction in being light in yet another way.

Love this post, my friend!

Deb @ Raising Figure Skaters May 17, 2012 at 8:37 AM

Why is it so easy to forget how lucky we are?! When I read the letters from our Compassion kids, I’m often shocked to remember how difficult life is for so many. One of our sponsored children has already had both of her parents die, and we just learned that her siblings were put into foster care. We’re so thankful that we’ve been able to help her stay in school and with relatives. Thanks so much for a very thought-provoking post and a great reminder, Michelle.

Maria @ A Blooming Spirit May 17, 2012 at 9:12 AM

This is thought provoking indeed. One of the many blessings after going thru a financial hardship has been how I don’t take anything in my life for granted, especially the little things in life. So when I find myself wanting to buy something that I really don’t need, I always have that little voice in my head asking me “do you really need it?”. then I think of people in other parts of the world that have so much more less than we do and I am moved to be a better steward. By the way, thanks for hosting. 🙂

Lori May 17, 2012 at 9:18 AM

Yes, we all need to remember to be thankful for our blessings and help those in need. Sometimes those in need are in your area. There are people in my area that still have dirt floors in their houses. I (we) need to see these people through the eyes of Jesus and be his hands and feet to help them spiritually and physically. Great post!

Michelle May 18, 2012 at 6:24 AM

So true. Sometimes those in need in our own area are all to easy to ignore… good advice!

Wendy @ ECTaS! May 17, 2012 at 11:49 AM

Yes, we do indeed have so much to be thankful for. This post is an excellent reminder… thank you!

Alecia May 17, 2012 at 1:47 PM

Wow, your up early! And get a lot done.
I’ve read Nester’s post on her Compassion trip along with the other bloggers, I’m so glad they went and blogged about their experience. They really brought home what the lives of those that we sponsor are really like. It somehow made it more real, if that makes sense. Very thought provoking post!

Tulip@True Aim May 17, 2012 at 1:55 PM

You really made me think with this one. My husband and I were just discussing how we have so much more than even our own parents. Thanks for reminding me to be thankful and generous.

Dolly@Soulstops May 17, 2012 at 6:36 PM

Great reminder, Michelle! I’ve been asking God is there something else we can do besides what we are already doing…loved how honest you were about how comfortable we are, and it does make me uncomfortable…so I’m continuing to pray…thanks for the link up; Nice to meet you… it is my first time 🙂

Michelle May 18, 2012 at 6:23 AM

Thanks, Dolly! And welcome to Thought Provoking Thursday. 🙂 I look forward to getting to know you.

Courtney May 18, 2012 at 6:02 AM

This message is weighing on me. I’m reading Jen Hatmaker’s “7” right now, and this is right on point. Thought provoking, indeed.

Michelle May 18, 2012 at 6:22 AM

You’re the second person to tell me that about “7”… I’m going to have to pick up a copy!

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